Client : Alton Towers Resort | Location : Alton, Staffordshire
The Grade II* Listed ‘Grand’ Garden Conservatory dates from circa 1820, designed for the 15th Earl of Shrewsbury by Robert Abraham. A single-storey sandstone ashlar building consisting of three pavilions with seven gilded cast iron domes, connected by colonnaded ‘loggia’, with glazed timber ‘French’ windows. The conservatory is arguably the most impressive feature of the gardens and pre-dates the arrival of A W Pugin in 1837 and is considered one of the best surviving conservatories of the period.
The approach to repairing the ‘Grand’ Garden Conservatory was principally to ‘mend’ and conserve the existing surviving historic fabric and also to un-pick previous poorly informed repair and maintenance works, through the repair of the sandstone ashlar masonry and cast iron structure; the repair, overhaul & replacement of glazed timber windows and doors; the repair, overhaul & replacement of cast ironwork to the nine variously shaped domed roofs and roof glazing, and the gilding of the nine pineapple finials; complete re-decoration; repairing & replacing leadwork; replacement cast iron rainwater goods; and repairing floor tiles, internal stone planting beds & fountain features etc.